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  1. Girl, 2, injured after being hit by car
  2. Dad marks error-filled schools boss letter
  3. Thieves steal 'large quantity' of solar panels
  4. 'Deliberate' fire destroys shed and damages outbuilding
  5. Hundreds to welcome Plymouth warship home
  6. Illusion Fireworks crowned British champions
  7. Updates on Friday 10 August 2018

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All times stated are UK

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Woman in Westward Ho! tries to 'stop incoming tide'

Millicent Cooke

BBC News Online

Jeremy Vine has shared a rather unusual attempt at stopping the tide in Westward Ho!.

The BBC Radio 2 presenter tweeted his amusement after spotting the woman and her dog stood behind a makeshift trench.

View more on twitter

Weather: Patchy rain to start but heavier later

BBC Weather

Showers will fade through Friday evening to allow for some late evening sunshine.

Through the night, cloud will steadily build from the southwest, with a chance of some patchy rain arriving around dawn.

Minimum Temperature: 7 to 12C (45 to 54F).

Weather map

A cloudy start for Saturday with some patchy rain here and there.

As the day progresses, the rain will become more persistent, with a strengthening southwesterly wind.

Maximum Temperature: 16 to 20C (61 to 68F).

Special tribute to Battle of Britain pilot

John Danks

BBC Spotlight

A special tribute has been paid by RNAS Culdrose in Cornwall to one of the last pilots from World War Two who were known as "the few".

Squadron Leader Geoffrey Wellum, who lived on the Lizard Peninsula, was the youngest Spitfire pilot to take part in the Battle of Britain and died last month at the age of 96.

The Cornwall naval base prepared a Spitfire before it performed a flypast - in tribute - over his funeral in Mullion.

Video courtesy of RNAS Culdrose

Tom Daley tipped to join Strictly Come Dancing 2018 cast

Plymouth Live

Olympic diver Tom Daley is the latest star to reportedly sign up for this year's Strictly Come Dancing.

Tom, 24, from Plymouth, could be joining the likes of Pussycat Doll star Ashley Roberts, Steps star Faye Tozer, Blue's Lee Ryan and YouTube personality Zoella's brother Joe Sugg.

Thresher 'may have been hunting schooling fish'

Johanna Carr

BBC News Online

Thresher shark
Robert Hughes/Devon Sea Safari

The thresher shark pictured breaching off the Devon coast may have been hunting mackerel or other small schooling fish, an expert has said.

John Richardson, from the Shark Trust, described the images taken by Robert Hughes, from Devon Sea Safari in Orestone, Torbay, on Thursday, as "amazing" and being taken with "impeccable timing".

It is believed dolphins started behaving oddly shortly before the thresher shark came out of the water, may have been trying to chase it away.

Mr Richardson said the presence of a larger animal may have caused the dolphins to change their behaviour.

He said: "The thresher is completely non-threatening to dolphins.

"They are only geared up for eating the likes of mackerel and squid... but I guess the dolphins don't know that.

"Maybe the fact that there is a larger animal in the water might alter their behaviour."

Thresher shark
Robert Hughes/Devon Sea Safari

Thresher sharks use their impressive tails, which make up half the length of their body, to stun lots of prey at once with sharp overhead tail slaps.

In June, a fisherman caught a 21 stone (133kg) thresher - thought to the biggest ever pulled from Welsh waters in Pembrokeshire.

Mr Richardson said threshers were found most abundantly 40 to 75 miles offshore.

He said: "They come closer to shore when mackerel and other small schooling fish are running."

Matthew Marsh

He is aged just 16, almost seven feet tall and could be the next great name in basketball - and he is English.

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Police panel have 'severe concern' over force merger

Ben Woolvin

BBC South West Home Affairs correspondent

Police tape

Councillors who sit on the Devon and Cornwall police and crime panel have said they have "very severe concern" regarding plans to merge with Dorset police force.

A meeting to discuss the merger was held in Plymouth today.

Plymouth City Council Leader, Tudor Evans attacked the plans and said "the merger is being decided behind closed doors".

The next panel meeting has been postponed until early October, to allow the chief constable and the commissioner to provide more details.

Details on extra officer numbers, how they will be paid for and how they'll be split between the two forces have been requested

The case needs to be with the Home Office by 12 October.

Locals unhappy with 'cheap and nasty' Bretonside complex

BBC Radio Devon

A new £53m leisure development in Plymouth city centre has come under fire from locals because of the way it looks.

Some people said the rear of the Bretonside building - which has recently been decorated in black and white thick stripes - looked "cheap and nasty".

The developers, British Land, said it was "delivering a flagship leisure scheme to Plymouth city centre and its wider region" and the building has been designed to accommodate this.

Have a listen to what these people think...

Artist impression of what the complex will look like on completion

Fourth annual Devon Street Food Festival begins

BBC Radio Devon

The Devon Street Food Festival is under way in Ilfracombe.

Until Sunday, food suppliers and market stalls will be at Victoria Pleasure Grounds with different foods for visitors to try.

It's the fourth year of the free event.

Bus services delayed due to A30 accident


Some bus services are delayed in and around Barnstaple, Exeter and Okehampton due to heavy traffic on the A30, Stagecoach SouthWest has said.

The A30 eastbound between Okehampton Services and Whiddon Down is blocked because of an accident involving two vehicles.

View more on twitter

Call to change boating drink-drive laws

BBC Spotlight

There are calls in the south west for drink-drive laws to be extended to all boat users to try to improve sea safety.

The British Ports Association, which represents harbours around the country, wants the current alcohol rules that apply to commercial vessels to be extended to all watercraft users.

There was an attempt to bring in a law back in 2003 but it was not enacted at the time.

The Royal Yachting Association said it would not object to legislation so long as there was compelling evidence for it and it was clear, understandable and enforceable.

Teignmouth harbourmaster, commander David Vaughan, says people who drink while at sea are "a danger to themselves and other people"...

Perranporth beach

The beach was also "far too busy", according to a TripAdvisor review that was shared on Facebook.

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Severe accident: A30 Devon eastbound

BBC News Travel

A30 Devon eastbound severe accident, between B3260 and A382 Exeter Road Whiddon Down.

A30 Devon - A30 blocked and queuing traffic eastbound between Oakhampton Services in Okehampton and Whiddon Down, because of an accident involving two vehicles.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Dolphins 'harass' shark into breaching

Johanna Carr

BBC News Online

Thresher shark
Robert Hughes/Devon Sea Safari

A 11.5ft (3.5m) thresher shark jumped clean out of the water possibly because it was being harassed dolphins.

The image was taken by skipper Robert Hughes, from Devon Sea Safari, who described the moment as "incredible".

Mr Hughes was in Orestone, Torbay, with a tour who were watching dolphins when he saw the shark.

He said: "The dolphins were swimming right up to the boat and they all started acting quite strangely - breaching sideways and tails slapping the water.

"Their behaviour had changed and I think they were probably having a go at the shark which probably was why it breached at that time."

Mr Hughes said he had seen smaller thresher sharks a few times recently but trying to get one on camera was more difficult.

Threshers, which are harmless to humans, can be found in tropical to cold-temperate seas around the world.

Plaque dedicated to first female MP to be unveiled

BBC Radio Devon

A blue plaque dedicated to the first female MP to take her seat in the House of Commons will be unveiled in Plymouth.

The Lord Mayor of Plymouth will do the honours at Nancy Astor's former home at 15:00.

Lady Astor was the MP for Plymouth Sutton from 1919 to 1945.

Devon boy wins five medals at British Transplant Games

BBC Radio Devon


A nine-year-old has won a fistful of medals at the British Transplant Games in Birmingham.

Nathaniel Gale, from Totnes, had a liver transplant as a baby after almost dying from chronic liver failure.

He is celebrating winning five medals at the recent games.

His mum Claire Gale is very proud and hopes the event will raise the profile of organ donation...

Boardmasters targeted in police operation

Lauren Haly

BBC News Online

A major police operation has taken place in Cornwall to protect festivalgoers at Boardmasters.

Operation Allied Wolf involved the police working with partner organisations including the National Crime Agency on Wednesday and Thursday.

Automated Number Plate Recognition technology "allowed officers to identify criminals who were making their way to the festival" in Newquay, police said.

The operation in action
Devon and Cornwall Police

Devon and Cornwall Police revealed a list of offences which included people being arrested for possession of cannabis, a wanted man being arrested for a number of offences and the seizure of 12 vehicles with no insurance.

Sgt Emma Stringer said: “We used this opportunity [the festival] to reinforce messages around road safety to drivers.

"Some of the officers involved are also family liaison officers, who have to deliver that knock on the door that will change a family’s life forever. We will do everything in our power to reduce the number of times this happens in our area."

Matt Taylor

Brent Pilnick

BBC Sport

Exeter City manager Matt Taylor says he has approached Chelsea to try to bring in some of their young players on loan.

Read more

Children rescued after being stuck on sand bar

Lauren Haly

BBC News Online

Two children and an adult have been rescued after becoming stuck on a sand bar in Cornwall.

The RNLI launched their lifeboat at Rock just before 13:00 on 9 August after the tide came in around the trio.

They were transported safely back to shore by the lifeboat crew.

Volunteer Lifeboat Operations Manager Mark Lawrence said: ‘We urge everyone visiting the coast this weekend to be aware of the local tide times and cut off areas so you can keep yourself safe.

"Tide times are widely available online, on display at many beaches and in local businesses and arming yourself with a simple but very valuable piece of information will really make a difference."

Severe disruption: M5 Devon both ways

BBC News Travel

M5 Devon both ways severe disruption, between J31 for and J30 for Exeter.

M5 Devon - One lane closed and very slow traffic on M5 between J31, Exminster and J30, Exeter, because of a lorry having a tyre changed. Congestion to Splatford Split.

To report traffic and travel incidents dial 0330 123 0184 at any time

Plymouth House of Fraser shut as chain is bought

Plymouth Live

The Plymouth branch was closed as the news broke that Mike Ashley's Sports Direct has struck a deal to rescue House of Fraser out of administration.

Murder investigation continues in Torbay

Lauren Haly

BBC News Online

Detectives are continuing to investigate the death of a 49-year-old man.

David Williams, from Brixham, died after he received a serious injury following an incident on the Quay on 29 June.

A 53-year-old man was interviewed at Torquay Police Station on August 9 and later released under caution.

Five men from Brixham aged, 21, 23, 27, 28 and 30 were previously arrested and released under investigation.

A full police investigation continues.

David Williams
Devon and Cornwall Police

SWW supplies more water during July

BBC Radio Cornwall

New figures from South West Water show demand for water rocketed during July's warm, dry weather.

The company said it supplied an extra 1,624 megalitres of water compared to the same time last year - the equivalent to 650 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

South West Water says "reservoir storage is at a satisfactory level" but is asking people to use water wisely to conserve supplies.

Dorset and Devon and Cornwall police merger meeting

BBC Radio Devon

Police officers on the street

Devon and Cornwall's Police and Crime Panel will consider the proposed merger with the Dorset force at a meeting in Plymouth later.

But Plymouth City Council Leader, Tudor Evans, attacked the plans and said "the merger is being decided behind closed doors without properly consulting residents or knowing what the implications might be for cities such as Plymouth."

Police and crime commissioners from both Devon and Cornwall, and Dorset, launched a public survey on the plans in June.

Team 'set fire' to competitor's site at fireworks event

BBC Radio Devon

The winners of the British Firework Championships in Plymouth have revealed the reason for a delay in proceedings between the second and third displays on Thursday night - it "set fire" to one of its competitors' wiring looms.

Karl Mitchell-Shead, company director of Oxfordshire-based Illusion Fireworks, said they fired "too wide" and "unfortunately" one of the effects units landed in another team's site.

Thousands of people gathered around Plymouth Sound for the annual event to see six teams compete over two days.

House of Fraser calls in administrators

BBC Radio Devon

House of Fraser store in Plymouth

The struggling department store is to appoint administrators after giving up the fight to save the business.

A statement issued says the company will continue trading and all its stores will be open today as usual.

Plymouth is one of the 31 stores set to close across the country.

It is thought about 250 jobs in the city are to be affected, with direct job losses at the store and also the knock-on effect for other adjoining stores.

New housing development 'infested with rats'

John Danks

BBC Spotlight

Residents in a new housing development in Devon claim they are "living in hell" following a "rat infestation".

People living in the homes think the rodents use the drainage system in Cranbrook to enter the properties.

Homeowners have told the BBC it has been "stressful" and it has cost them "thousands of pounds" to deal with the problem.

Many are calling on the developer, Bovis Homes, for compensation. Louise Green and Marilyn Kelly live in Cranbrook...

We undertook camera surveys and other works and there was no evidence suggesting that the cause of the rat infestation was the result of the design or construction. A pre-construction ecological survey found no evidence of rats or other vermin being present on the ground prior to the property being occupied. No such issues were raised with them during the two-year customer warranty period, or in the 18 months that followed."

Bovis Homes

Plympton accident and slow moving towards Exeter

BBC Radio Devon

  • In Plympton there are reports of an accident on Holland Road near Langage Business Park.
  • In Newton St Cyres on the A377 near Station Road there are temporary traffic lights for gas main work. Traffic is slow moving heading towards Exeter.

'Deliberate' fire destroys shed and damages outbuilding

Lauren Haly

BBC News Online

A deliberate fire has completely destroyed a shed, hedgerow and damaged an outbuilding in Exeter, firefighters have said.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue said: "On arrival of the first crew they confirmed smoke and flames were issuing from the rear garden of the property."

Fire crews were called at 00:22 to Leypark Road after multiple calls from residents.

No-one was injured.

Thieves steal 'large quantity' of solar panels

Millicent Cooke

BBC News Online

Police are searching for thieves who stole a "large quantity" of solar panels and £30,000 worth of scrap metal.

View more on twitter

29ft yacht with 'severe' fuel leak rescued by RNLI


Hundreds to welcome Plymouth warship home

BBC Spotlight

Devonport-based warship HMS Sutherland will return to Plymouth later after seven months on operation.

The Type 23 frigate set sail from Plymouth in January and visited Australia and the Asia Pacific on peace-keeping duties.

While there it carried out exercises with the Royal Australian and Royal New Zealand navies.

The ship was also on counter-piracy and trafficking activity in the Middle East.

Hundreds of friends and family of crew members are expected to welcome the ship's company home.

HMS Sutherland

First time firm crowned British champions

BBC Spotlight


Thousands of people packed vantage points around Plymouth Sound on Thursday evening for the second and final night of the British Firework Championships.

The final three of six teams from across the country battled it out, setting off their pyrotechnics from the Mountbatten breakwater.

The winning display was the second of the night put on by Oxfordshire-based Illusion Fireworks.

It was the first time the company had entered the competition.

Weather: Showers, thunder and sunny spells

BBC Weather

A few showers first thing, but most areas will start dry.

A breezy day with sunny spells and heavy showers that will be thundery at times and may merge into longer spells of rain.

The maximum temperature will be 17 to 20C .

Geographical weather map